An employee working as a Community Support Worker has had her personal grievance claim for unjustified dismissal rejected by the Employment Relations Authority.

The ERA held that the employer carried out a comprehensive and fair investigation into a complaint made against her by one of her clients. The client was a frail and elderly man who alleged that the employee had abused her position by requesting cups of tea and making him do the housework while she sat on the couch.

The ERA noted that the employee had been informed of the serious nature of the matter, and that dismissal was a possibility. The employee was advised that she could bring a support person to the disciplinary meetings, and was provided with all of the relevant information.

The employer considered all of the potential options open to her but noted that the client no longer wanted the employee in his home. The employer genuinely considered the employee’s response to the possibility of her dismissal but ultimately decided that her trust and confidence in the employee had gone. This was an action that a fair and reasonable employer could take in all of the circumstances.